The African Development Bank Group (AfDB) and Nigeria’s United Bank for Africa (UBA) have signed a $150 million loan agreement to finance Small and Medium Scale enterprises (SMEs).
The loan was initiated to also finance infrastructure and women-owned enterprises in Nigeria, AfDB said in its news release.
“The Fund will support development of productive sectors of the economy; particularly the power sector, infrastructure, women owned enterprises as well as SMEs.
This line of credit comes at an opportune time to boost efforts at reducing the huge power sector-financing deficit that is limiting energy supply.
“It is to complement our support to medium and small scale enterprises while also promoting gender diversification across the value chain,” Mr. Kennedy Uzoka, UBA Group Managing Director, said on Thursday in Lagos.
Incorporated in 1961, UBA, one of the largest commercial banks in Nigeria, operates in 19 African countries.
It provides a wide range of products and services.
UBA has been the leading financial institution to support various infrastructure projects, particularly power, telecom, transport and also social infrastructure such as hospital and education facilities.
UBA Nigeria operates in each of the country’s 36 states through more than 450 branches supporting 3,700 SMEs across the country.
AfDB has remained UBA’s long-term partner in its financing activities.
In 2009, AfDB provided liquidity facilities to deepen its trade finance and other lending activities, thus contributing to key economic sectors of the Nigerian economy, particularly at a time when the economy requires critical funding to stimulate growth and employment.
By leveraging UBA’s branch network, the Line of Credit will also scale up lending to SMEs and women enterprises in both urban and rural areas to create more jobs.
The credit would also promote inclusive growth for Nigeria’s economy by stimulating the various sectors such as manufacturing, construction, agriculture, education and services.